A Surprising Study Finds That Our Moon Once Had An Atmosphere


For a long period of time scientists thought that our moon never had any atmosphere. We may have been totally wrong about our Moon for the most part of human history. A new study published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters claims that the moon had an atmosphere around 3.5 billion years ago.

Atmosphere On Moon

If you don’t know that the Moon doesn’t have any atmosphere now because of its very weak gravity and magnetic field. Sun’s solar radiation striped away any atmosphere moon ever had. The new research claims that around 3.5 billion years ago active volcanos on moons surface shoot gas into the sky rapidly which steeled in the atmosphere before dissipating. At that time it had denser atmosphere than now Mars has. Which is really cool. The atmosphere stayed for around 70 million years before it was completely washed out.

The volcanic eruption even released water onto Moon surface. NASA’s Needham says, “The total amount of H2O released during the emplacement of the mare basalts is near twice the volume of water in Lake Tahoe. Although much of this vapour would have been lost to space, a significant fraction may have made its way to the lunar poles. This means some of the lunar polar volatiles we see at the lunar poles may have originated inside the Moon.”

David Kring notes, “This work dramatically changes our view of the Moon from an airless rocky body to one that used to be surrounded by an atmosphere more prevalent than that surrounding Mars today.”

The findings changed our view of Moon completely. There is even a small chance that between that 70 million period life could have sprouted on Moon. Its just a speculation though. This new research will help scientists to better understand our closest neighbour and plan our future missions. This new study might inspire scientists to send people to Moon again.


Also published on Medium.